“We will make it so that a Democrat cannot govern as a Democrat.”

Fanatics.

148 replies
  1. 1
    Tom says:

    How does that Universal Healthcare taste, Grover? Taste good?

  2. 2
    JGabriel says:

    Grover Norquist:

    We will make it so that a Democrat cannot govern as a Democrat.

    Because one party rule has worked so well in past. Republicans have never been against that.

    .

  3. 3
    beltane says:

    Too bad that those who are considered “fanatics” on our side also like to spend most of their energy going after Democrats. To be an American of any political stripe these days means being a milquetoast with regards to the far-right.

  4. 4
    Kathleen says:

    Good for Patrick! I’m very glad that he stated the case so clearly and truthfully. And I’m shocked that the Post printed it.

  5. 5
    spark says:

    They aren’t being made to pay a political price.

    We’ve all started taking the modern state for granted. We’ve lost touch with the struggle that created it.

    Time to get back to basics.

  6. 6
    Valdivia says:

    I guess this is why they have been in a snit since Obama took over and passed all that legislation that is so not in line with Grover’s interests.

  7. 7
    Rock says:

    I think spark is right…the only thing that might discredit Republican economic policies is another depression. People forget why social security and medicare exist, just as they forgot why clean water regulations exist.

    Republicans can just say “The air is clean and water is drinkable, there’s no need for these job-killing environmental regulations” Similarly, the percentage of old people starving has declined mightily from 1930. So clearly, SS is unnecessary.

  8. 8
    vtr says:

    If Marx and Norquist share the goal of making the state disappear, is Norquist a communist?

  9. 9
    Zandar says:

    But if Obama were only “more progressive” I’m sure the GOP (relentlessly dragging the country further to the right on a daily basis and blocking everything else that they don’t approve of) would just give up, so it’s really Obama’s fault, right?

  10. 10
    JGabriel says:

    I wish the IRS would fucking audit Norquist already. You just know that someone who is as anti-tax as Grover, someone who made it his career to be an anti-tax extremist, is probably cheating on his returns too.

    .

  11. 11
    beltane says:

    Spar is correct. This is what happens when you don’t know your history. The world these assholes want to resurrect is the one that was a breeding ground for violent revolution.

  12. 12
    Linnaeus says:

    Republicans can just say “The air is clean and water is drinkable, there’s no need for these job-killing environmental regulations” Similarly, the percentage of old people starving has declined mightily from 1930. So clearly, SS is unnecessary.

    Ralph Nader spoke about this very thing about ten years or so ago; he called it “the liberal’s dilemma”, in which the success of liberal reforms was ironically used in conservative arguments as reasons to get rid of those reforms.

  13. 13
    Hunter Gathers says:

    Deval Patrick should run for Senate. He’d wipe the floor with Senator Cosmo Von Truck Nutz.

  14. 14
    Linnaeus says:

    If Marx and Norquist share the goal of making the state disappear, is Norquist a communist?

    Nah, he’s more like Murray Rothbard.

  15. 15
    JGabriel says:

    Rock:

    I think spark is right…the only thing that might discredit Republican economic policies is another depression.

    Beware of what you wish for. It’s not entirely clear that we aren’t in a depression right now. If the economy dips again, I can see the NBER defining the whole shebang as a depression and backdating it to December of 2007.

    .

  16. 16
    Elizabelle says:

    In keeping with Spark’s comment at 5, the WaPost published another credible op ed this week; Canadian professor reminding us why the Gilded Age plutocrats went with some social reforms. It was in their best interests.

    What history teaches us about the welfare state
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....ory_1.html

  17. 17
    geg6 says:

    And do any Firebaggers want to argue again about how it’s somehow ok for their Dear Leader to hang around with this guy? Or how she’s such a great progressive? Either she’s a dupe of this asshole or she’s in collaboration with him. Anyone supposedly on my side who hangs with this guy for any reason is not to be trusted.

  18. 18
    Rock says:

    Beware of what you wish for. It’s not entirely clear that we aren’t in a depression right now. If the economy dips again, I can see the NBER defining the whole shebang as a depression and backdating it to December of 2007.

    I’m decidedly not wishing for depression, only observing that the current near-depression wasn’t enough to discredit the system that lead to it. I don’t believe that whatever would follow a depression, and who really knows what that would be, could justify massive human suffering.

  19. 19
    vtr says:

    @14. Thanks. My economics education is sparse. I didn’t know about Rothbard, so I read about his theories in the Wikiped. It’s like a Borscht Belt nightclub comedy routine.

  20. 20
    Joel says:

    Recently watched Casino Jack (the fictionalized version, with Kevin Spacey) and loved the portrayal of Norquist as a weak-willed, incompetent buffoon.

  21. 21
    Roger Moore says:

    OT: Atlas Shrugged Part II is on. Fox has decided to pick up the DVD distribution deal- no political influence going into that deal, I promise- so they’ve decided to go ahead and make the next installment. Lord have mercy.

  22. 22
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Republicans can just say “The air is clean and water is drinkable, there’s no need for these job-killing environmental regulations” Similarly, the percentage of old people starving has declined mightily from 1930. So clearly, SS is unnecessary.

    This general trope applies to so many things. My favorite example is computers and the internet itself…private industry once told us, with metaphysical certitude, that there was a market for perhaps three computers in the entire world. Computers were huge, bulky things before NASA (another one of those soshulist entities) came along and started seeking smaller and smaller computers to be put into the limited space available in a spacecraft. THEN the original Ma Bell told DoD the idea of computers communicating with each other across the phone network was impossible. Yet, here we are, in the 21st century, with millions of computers the country, often several in each home and dozens in the offices of even small businesses, and they’re interconnected to each other over the same network that phone calls are made over, despite the impossibility of such things according to captains of industry.

    Because the government made it happen, NOT the private sector.

  23. 23
    OzoneR says:

    Many on the left don’t understand that the only thing the right wants, the only thing they stand for, is to make sure you lose, regardless of how many people get hurt in the process.

    They may actually agree with the left on some principals but will never admit it. They will twist themselves in knots defending ideas they oppose or know will hurt people because their primary goal is to make liberals cry.

    It’s classic personality politics. They are raised to believe that the left is full of pot-smoking flag-burning hippies. Angela Davises, Ron Kovics, Hunter S. Thompsons. That’s who they see. They may agree with you, but to defend the honor of their country, they must oppose you. The right has done a great job at presenting lefties as unpatriotic and thus their ideas must be rejected. They have used wedge issues like flag burning amendments and “under God” in the pledge to try to get some lefty to bite and become their stereotype of liberals. I had a neighbor back in Indiana who kept saying “Our country started having these problems when we started allowing people to burn the flag.” And God forbid you tell him that flag burning was never illegal, it’s rare and one of the first occasions of it in the United States was during the Whiskey Rebellion in the 1790s, then you’re just a crazy shrill liberal and you should shutup.

  24. 24
    gnomedad says:

    @Linnaeus:
    Hey, the plane is holding altitude just fine; we won’t be needing these expensive engines anymore.

    @OzoneR:
    Hear, hear; well said!

  25. 25
    ABL says:

    @Zandar – And Hamsher working with Norquist to kill the bill is forward-thinking progressive politics, right?

  26. 26
    moonbat says:

    Its a combination of three things: people not recognizing cause and effect; not studying history; and somehow not applying their real world experience with the profit motive to the whole govt. vs. private enterprise equation.

    I mean, how retarded can you be not to see that the profit motive is going to make privately run prisons want to put more people in jail?

  27. 27
    OzoneR says:

    how retarded can you be not to see that the profit motive is going to make privately run prisons want to put more people in jail?

    Are you new in America? This country has trouble with GOVERNMENT BUILDING THINGS = JOBS.

  28. 28
    JGabriel says:

    Roger Moore:

    OT: Atlas Shrugged Part II is on.

    Hmm. I wonder if anyone who appeared in the first one will be too embarrassed by the end result to re-appear in the second?

    I suppose not. That would require positing that a person who would appear in an Ayn Rand movie would be capable of shame, which seems unlikely.

    .

  29. 29
    Davis X. Machina says:

    They’re not Republicans, they’re monarchists. They’re interchangeable with the Bourbon faction in early 19th c. France.

    The royalist party in a parliament has no real interest in cooperating with the small-r republican parties, in governing. Its sole purpose for being is to hasten the day Restoration.

    When the king comes into his own again, ‘politics’ can return to its God-intended form: courtiers jockeying around the Throne for grace and favor and preferment, for pensions and governorships abroad, and royal monopolies. The king is the government — even, or especially, when a feckless king reigns, and the ministers do all the heavy lifting.

    Parliament can become again what it was meant to be, a gentleman’s club that bestirs itself occasionally to vote credits for the king’s wars.

    The weirdest transformation of political terminology isn’t what’s happened to the word ‘liberal’ since John Stuart Mill — it’s what happened to the word ‘republican’.

    Republicans are monarchists.

  30. 30
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @ Hunter Gathers: It would be a very close race. Neither has an approval rating north of 50%, but Brown is more popular that Patrick right now, by about ten points.

  31. 31
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    I mean, how retarded can you be not to see that the profit motive is going to make privately run prisons want to put more people in jail?

    Faux Nooze viewer retarded, basically.

  32. 32
    dogwood says:

    The Norquist quote is a testament to the tenacity and discipline of the Republican coalition. They are in it for the long haul in ways that the Democrats are not. You only have to look at the differences in the two parties on key issues such as gay rights and abortion rights to see the fundamental differences. Republicans have been fighting Roe v Wade for almost 40 years now, yet haven’t had the ruling overturned. But they hang in there and celebrate each small limit on abortion handed down by courts or enacted by state legislatures. We are now at a tipping point were these smaller limits are adding up to a serious threat to a woman’s right to choose. No Republican president did much more than facilitate that slow march with some court appointments and rhetoric. And no pro-life group wasted their time picketing the Reagan, or Bush I or II White Houses demanding an end to abortion NOW. They don’t attack their allies; they attack their enemies. They understand that each part of the movement has a part to play and they never go off script. Of course that’s not how the left goes about things. As this White House was working to overturn DADT, Dan Choi was chaining himself to the WH fence. If you want to know why “we can’t have nice things”, this is it. We don’t have the patience or discipline it takes.

  33. 33
    trollhattan says:

    Grover wants to burn your granny.

    http://www.colbertnation.com/t.....r-norquist

    Also, too: an article in today’s paper notes Clarence Thomas brings each new group of clerks home to show them “The Fountainhead,” which explains much. Can somebody please go back in time and prevent Rand from publishing? We’ll instantly be a better nation.

  34. 34
    Firebert says:

    I’ve spent the last few years helping my girlfriend struggle with the broken Medicaid system here in Texas.

    When I’m discouraged, I cheer myself up by imagining Grover Norquist drowning in a bathtub.

  35. 35
    Triassic Sands says:

    It is the height of fiscal folly. It is also not who we are as a country. — Deval Patrick

    Why make statements like this? It isn’t who we should be as a country, but it most certainly is who we’ve become. Minnesota and Wisconsin, one-time progressive bastions, are now lunaticracies, with large enough contingents of complete lunatics to make them all-but-unrecognizable by voters of just a couple of decades ago. When they’re not passing anti-democratic legislation, they’re busy shutting down the government, because complete failure is preferable to raising taxes on millionaires.

    The people of California continue to elect Democrats, but also pass initiatives that threaten to destroy the state. The same thing is happening in Washington State, where the lessons of California’s insanity are missed completely by voters. Since 1999, the most powerful person in the state has been Tim Eyman, a mindless, frat-boy-turned-professional initiative writer, who has, by appealing to an apparently bottomless reservoir of stupignorance and greed, made the state a fiscal disaster area, while Democratic governors haven’t even bothered to put up a good fight

    Nationally, the GOP spent the first years of the twenty-first century trying to haul the country back to the Dark Ages via Grover Norquist’s time machine. After taking the country (and world) to the brink of complete financial disaster, the Republicans were punished by voters with a brief time out of power — instead of the permanent exile they deserve. After only two years on the bench, the GOP, courtesy of the horrific American electorate, came roaring back at the polls in November 2010. Now, the voters may well return the GOP to dominance official majority status (they continue to dominate much of the time even while in the minority) in the Senate. Obama’s hold on the White House is tenuous, and his veto pen could be the only thing standing between our limping along toward permanent failure and simply leaping head first into the abyss.

    And we aren’t that kind of country? We sure as hell are trying to be.

  36. 36
    gogol's wife says:

    Dogwood is right at #31. This is what I write to Krugman, when I bother to write to him. Don’t attack your allies, attack your enemies.

  37. 37

    @20 roger moore

    this is good news for the cast, crew, their families,the people who wish they become famous so they can say they knew them when, and the 7 other people who enjoyed that movie. thorazine might cut into the later most group.

  38. 38

    @20 roger moore

    this is good news for the cast, crew, their families,the people who wish they become famous so they can say they knew them when, and the 7 other people who enjoyed that movie. thorazine might cut into the later most group.

  39. 39
    Shalimar says:

    Can somebody please go back in time and prevent Rand from publishing?

    Let them get another year or two into her philosophy, then make a couple minute long commercial of Rand railing against Christianity and let it go viral for all the church-going base to see. Maybe at least some of them will realize the evil they have been sold. Current Republican ideology teaches the exact opposite values from Christianity. That point can’t be emphasized enough.

  40. 40
    OzoneR says:

    This is what I write to Krugman, when I bother to write to him.

    Krugman isn’t serious when he goes after Obama, if you don’t think so, look at this post from yesterday.

    This is truly a tragedy: the great progressive hope (well, I did warn people) is falling all over himself to endorse right-wing economic fallacies.

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.c.....ver-obama/

    Very childish, also ignores the reality that even real great progressive hopes like Bernie Sanders, and Ben Bernanke, whom he endorsed for another term at the Fed, are talking about cutting the deficit and debt. It also ignores that the rest of the speech was a discussion on how to do it without hurting people, exactly what the left wants to hear from him.

    Krugman may have good economic ideas, but he plain hates Obama and it clouds his ability to write anything serious about him. He heard him say four words and decided to write a short inflammatory post catcalling PUMAs everywhere. He enjoys watching Obama flounder, that’s pretty clear.

  41. 41
    Corner Stone says:

    It doesn’t help when you adopt the language and ideas of your enemies either.

  42. 42
    dogwood says:

    It’s classic personality politics. They are raised to believe that the left is full of pot-smoking flag-burning hippies. Angela Davises, Ron Kovics, Hunter S. Thompsons. That’s who they see. They may agree with you, but to defend the honor of their country, they must oppose you.

    Of course it’s personality politics. The Right understands this. To win elections you need the votes of millions of people who don’t know much about government and don’t follow politics closely. They aren’t stupid or rubes or racists or idiots. They like the idea of the president as a sort of competent good-guy. Republicans understand this and that’s why they go in for character assassination. It’s also why they spend such effort lionizing presidents like Reagan. They know the people like their presidents to be political heroes. It used to work for Democrats too. Think FDR and Kennedy. But the Dems lost the playbook long ago. Their tactics are all defensive now. You see instead of pushing back on the teaparty and the birthers with ridicule and outrage about how awful those people are, Dems should have been on TV talking about how good, honorable and decent the president is. It’s pure corn, but it works. These are tough times, but the Dems have an advantage in that the President’s personal approval is around 70%. They should reinforce that, but they won’t. Believe me, Republicans would play it for all it’s worth.

  43. 43
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Roger Moore #20:

    There’s a funny typo in that article you linked:

    “Atlast Shrugged”

  44. 44
    Citizen_X says:

    Clarence Thomas brings each new group of clerks home to show them “The Fountainhead”

    Do not contemplate that sentence for long.

  45. 45
    WyldPirate says:

    Tom @1:

    How does that Universal Healthcare taste, Grover? Taste good?

    Several things–One, most of it hasn’t gone into effect yet, so it is not benefiting those who need it the most. Secondly, it feeds in millions of new customers to an industry–like Wall Street–that is nothing but a bunch of “skimmers”. 3. The Rethugs will take the Senate in 2012 and they are determined to repeal what hasn’t even gone into effect yet. 4. They might take the White House if they are successful at tanking the economy any further.

    Motto–don’t crow too goddamned much. There is no indication that the ACA is going to rein in costs too much–specifically when the US pay 2xs as much as any other industrialized country for shitty results.

  46. 46
    Tyro says:

    It isn’t who we should be as a country, but it most certainly is who we’ve become

    No kidding. The problem that many liberal politicians have is that they make the mistake of thinking that Republicans are better people than who they are and that the American people are better than who they actually are. Republicans seem to be pretty at peace with the fact that Americans have violent, baser instincts and spend time thinking about how to take advantage of that fact for their own ends. At best, you find some Democrats who realize that there is a voting constituency in support of being the “victim party” begging for scraps from the table in order to be a “peacemaker”, and appeal to voters who want that out of a party in order to get elected to office. But it’s very shirt term thinking– every election becomes about how the Democrat can best show himself to be a “peacemaker” in a given political issue, while the Republicans just want to spend the time to win the issue permanently.

    The voters are divided into two constituencies– the very worst and those who have a sort of Stockholm Syndrome compelling them to try to get the very worst to like them.

  47. 47
    ruemara says:

    Dogwood, I’ve been saying that now for a decade or more. And it just falls on deaf ears, at least with the power player liberals.

  48. 48
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    This is truly a tragedy: the great progressive hope (well, I did warn people) […]
    Very childish,

    Yeah, I didn’t like what Obama said, but that gratuitous little pout was annoying. I don’t remember that K-Thug was lobbying for any “great progressive hope” in ’08. One of the reasons I’m still an O-Bot is that I was never an O-Bot, he was never my new bicycle. I never saw anything but a pragmatic center-left Establishment Dem (like everyone else in the primary, except Kucinich) who could actually win (unlike everyone else in the primary, including Kucinich).

  49. 49
    Tyro says:

    don’t crow too goddamned much

    Wring. Gloat. Make them feel like shit. Demographer the fuckers. Remind em what failures they are in life and what worthless, useless pieces of shit they were when the rubber hit the road. You assignment, young liberals, is next time you run inti your loudmouthed right wing relative, is to crow, “how does universal health care, bitch?”

  50. 50
    Tuffy says:

    Conservatives have the courage of their convictions. They have their eye on the long game. They want to win at any cost. Democrats and liberals are born compromisers and capitulaters. They will always lose ultimately despite having more votes and more popular policies.

    This is a center-right nation because the right will never move left but the left will always nudge right.

  51. 51
    Tyro says:

    Demoralize the fuckers, is what I meant.

    “How does universal health care taste, bitch?” Memorize it. It’s your mantra.

  52. 52
    Dennis SGMM says:

    “We will make it so that a Democrat cannot govern as a Democrat.”

    That leaves us up a tree because, beyond slash-and-burn economic policies, Republicans can’t govern, period. The people who vote for these fucker-Republicans do so because they’re certain that they’re the Good Folk and therefore they won’t ever be the fuckees in the deal – the fuckees will of course be people of color, welfare cheats and anyone who isn’t saved. Yes they get fucked by those whom they elected, it’s just that the tribalism in this country has taken such hold that many of these fucker-Republican voters blame the Democrats for their rectal fissures because the R’s would never do a thing to harm their own.

    There is no short-term fix for this. There may not be a long-term fix short of dissolution of the US because every time that we convince ourselves that GOP malfeasance, misfeasance and ineptitude will drive voters away from them they double down on the crazy and they still get the votes.

  53. 53
    OzoneR says:

    But the Dems lost the playbook long ago. Their tactics are all defensive now. You see instead of pushing back on the teaparty and the birthers with ridicule and outrage about how awful those people are, Dems should have been on TV talking about how good, honorable and decent the president is. It’s pure corn, but it works. These are tough times, but the Dems have an advantage in that the President’s personal approval is around 70%. They should reinforce that, but they won’t.

    It doesn’t help that half the party wanted another Democrat in the White House. That’s why I think primaries are bad for Democrats, good for Republicans, Dems never close ranks. They may vote for the other guy, but they’ll never defend him/her, or promote him/her. Every flaw is proof that they were right.

  54. 54
    cat48 says:

    Patrick now has a higher poll# than Brown. He may be running. Are there term limits in MA?

    Wednesday, June 8, 2011
    Deval Patrick’s amazing rise
    If there was a ‘comeback player of the year’ award in American politics it would be hard to give it to anyone other than Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. In January of 2010 we found him with a 22% approval rating and 59% of voters disapproving. Our newest poll in the state finds those numbers almost completely reversed with 54% of voters now saying he’s doing a good job to 36% who dissent. That’s a 55 point climb in Patrick’s net approval over the last 17 months and he’s the only politician who’s ever seen that kind of resurrection in his image during the time we’ve been polling on a national basis.

  55. 55
    gbear says:

    Let them get another year or two into her philosophy, then make a couple minute long commercial of Rand railing against Christianity and let it go viral for all the church-going base to see.

    That commercial already exists. Did anyone actually see it? You can’t get the message to people who don’t want to know.

  56. 56
    dogwood says:

    ruemara-

    I’ve been saying that now for a decade or more. And it just falls on deaf ears, at least with the power player liberals.

    Because the Dems lost their way as politicians, there are no “power player liberals.” Power players need a posse, and Dems are all independent contractors. Even the supposedly liberal commentators are in it for themselves. Guys like Krugman would never appear on the Sunday morning shows unless he was willing to bash the president. Krugman isn’t a compelling TV personality and he knows it.

  57. 57
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .

    “We will make it so that a Democrat cannot govern as a Democrat.”

    Fortunately, our fiercely wise President Obama is perfectly willing to govern not as a Democrat.
    .
    .

  58. 58
    WyldPirate says:

    Zandar @(:

    But if Obama were only “more progressive” I’m sure the GOP (relentlessly dragging the country further to the right on a daily basis and blocking everything else that they don’t approve of) would just give up, so it’s really Obama’s fault, right?

    Obama is part of the problem. The further the Rethugs go towards the right, the more territory it opens in the center and the further right Dems move to take in those in the center. Hence you get Obama spouting “sensible” things like comparing the nation’s economy to a fucking family of four in middle America.

    That is Krugman’s point and Krugman is right, it is lunacy on Obama’s part. We do need government spending to stimulate the economy. IT is stupid to talk of reigning in government domestic spending given the state of the economy now. Keynes was right 80+ years ago and Krugman is right now. Obama saying that shit was was stupid, but it polls well with ignorant Americans that are simplistic morons and too goddamned stupid and lazy too read any history.

  59. 59
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @56 Uncle Clarence Thomas

    Oh shit, did I say “fiercely wise”? I meant “wisely fierce” of course.
    .
    .

  60. 60
    Chris says:

    If Marx and Norquist share the goal of making the state disappear, is Norquist a communist?

    Heh. Far right and far left getting together while pining to see democracy crumble? That’s never happened before… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hitler-Stalin_pact

  61. 61
    goblue72 says:

    I wouldn’t shed a tear is someone decided to go Sirhan Sirhan on Grover Norquist.

  62. 62
    Frankensteinbeck says:

    Corner Stone:
    I think it helps rather a lot to redefine your enemies’ language against them. When the average person hears the words ‘shared sacrifice’ I WANT them to hear Obama’s ‘the rich aren’t paying enough’. Unfortunately, the people who should be shouting ‘amen, brother!’ think it’s more important to complain.

  63. 63
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @40 Corner Stone

    It doesn’t help when you adopt the language and ideas of your enemies either.

    Or their employees.
    .
    .

  64. 64
    OzoneR says:

    Hence you get Obama spouting “sensible” things like comparing the nation’s economy to a fucking family of four in middle America.

    Yeah, because Obama is the first politician on the left to do this

    Dear Mr. President,
    This is a pivotal moment in the history of our country. Decisions are being made about the national budget that will impact the lives of virtually every American for decades to come. As we address the issue of deficit reduction we must not ignore the painful economic reality of today – which is that the wealthiest people in our country and the largest corporations are doing phenomenally well while the middle class is collapsing and poverty is increasing. In fact, the United States today has, by far, the most unequal distribution of wealth and income of any major country on earth.
    Everyone understands that over the long-term we have got to reduce the deficit – a deficit that was caused mainly by Wall Street greed, tax breaks for the rich, two wars, and a prescription drug program written by the drug and insurance companies.

    http://www.usnews.com/news/was.....he-deficit

    Obama saying that shit was was stupid, but it polls well with ignorant Americans that are simplistic morons and too goddamned stupid and lazy too read any history.

    Which is of course Obama’s fault? You missed Zander’s point, which is NO ONE WILL TAKE ANYONE, NOT EVEN OBAMA, SERIOUSLY IF HE SAYS OTHERWISE.

  65. 65
    trollhattan says:

    @Citizen_X

    Clarence Thomas brings each new group of clerks home to show them “The Fountainhead”
    __
    Do not contemplate that sentence for long.

    At the very least I hope they insist on Pepsi.

  66. 66
    OzoneR says:

    I think it helps rather a lot to redefine your enemies’ language against them. When the average person hears the words ‘shared sacrifice’ I WANT them to hear Obama’s ‘the rich aren’t paying enough’. Unfortunately, the people who should be shouting ‘amen, brother!’ think it’s more important to complain.

    Maybe they need to take a page out of Bernie Sanders’ playbook

  67. 67
    cat48 says:

    They are in it for the long haul

    Yep, and some just wanted a love affair w/Obama as long as he did everything exactly their way. No EXCEPTIONS! If their fee fees have been hurt, they will vote green or stay home!

    So Defeatist if one is truly a Liberal. I’ve always used my Vote for a more Liberal Supreme Court. It works better than any prez to move the old Overton Window.

  68. 68
    dogwood says:

    Uncle Clarence Thomas

    Fortunately, our fiercely wise President Obama is perfectly willing to govern not as a Democrat.

    I’m so tired of this stuff. Start telling me what exactly the president should do to govern as a Democrat. But you must be realistic and specific. You must explain exactly how progressive legislation would have passed in the 111th and 112th Congresses if Obama would have governed as a Democrat.

  69. 69
    Corner Stone says:

    @Frankensteinbeck

    I think it helps rather a lot to redefine your enemies’ language against them. When the average person hears the words ‘shared sacrifice’ I WANT them to hear Obama’s ‘the rich aren’t paying enough’.

    If the language were being redefined that may be helpful, even though IMO co-opting language and ideas necessitates a giving in of your own message.
    But that isn’t what’s happening. If you say “government can’t create jobs”, or “government needs to tighten its belt like a kitchen table checkbook” then people hear that government isn’t useful as THE employer of last resort in a time of need and that government has no role to play using all the tools unique to it. Tools kitchen table families do not have.
    It’s perpetuating a myth, not redefining it.

  70. 70
    harlana says:

    It is beyond amazing to me that we are bargaining with the very people who created this mess, about how much more damage we are willing to let them do to this country in the name of “compromise”

  71. 71
    OzoneR says:

    It is beyond amazing to me that we are bargaining with the very people who created this mess, about how much more damage we are willing to let them do to this country in the name of “compromise”

    What should we do? People elected them, they have power

  72. 72
    Chris says:

    @ Roger Moore –

    OT: Atlas Shrugged Part II is on. Fox has decided to pick up the DVD distribution deal- no political influence going into that deal, I promise- so they’ve decided to go ahead and make the next installment. Lord have mercy.

    For people who believe in the Invisible Hand of the Market ruling anything, there seems to be a hell of a lot of their media that survives on wingnut welfare.

    (Heck, the Washington Examiner gets handed out for free by some zillionnaire in Colorado).

  73. 73
    Chris_H says:

    Reminds me of this post from Bruce Bartlett:

    http://capitalgainsandgames.co.....nomics-rip

    “But if, as Republicans now maintain, taxes must never be increased at any time for any reason then there is never any political cost to raising spending and cutting taxes at the same time, as the Bush 43 administration and a Republican Congress did year after year.”

  74. 74
    General Stuck says:

    The only time the republicans get blamed, is when they are in total power for an extended period of time and nearly bankrupt and destroy the county, start wars based of false info, and various and assorted other sundries of incompetence.

    We can blame the press, but they are only reacting to the perennial favoritism the white majority voters have for the white party that is the GOP. I would have refused to believe this, at least to the degree I do now, before Obama was president and has been for 2.5 years.

    So the wingnuts can obstruct an all dem in power government with record block voting filibusters, and they will not get blamed. And pretty much do as they please, and the press will not question them much, because the people out there, or the majority of people, WANTS to believe the GOP is a party that can be trusted to govern. And this instinct is so powerful, that after 8 years of GWB and the utter devastation he wrought on our country, the voters, mostly white voters, handed the House back to the wingnuts, and nearly the Senate. ONLY TWO YEARS AFTER BUSH. And in 2008, while Bush and the GOP was still in total power, the dem candidate only won by 3 or 4 percentage points, which should have been the tipoff on just how deep running the racial and cultural tribal mentality is in America.

    And now it has come full circle, and not even Obama finding a bunch of spending cuts based of waste fraud and abuse, that pretty much equals what the wingers were demanding in dollar figures, they have turned up their nose at that and walked out of negotiations, because what they are really after is for the cuts to be directly tied to benefits of social and entitlement programs, and moron white voters STILL cannot bring themselves to muster the full metal rejection that this kind of scorched earth duplicitous wingnuttery should evoke . And the best they can do is the “both sides do it” bullshit.

    It really is not the media to blame, even though they very much should be about setting the record straight all the time, the lion”s share of the blame should go the lion’s share of the votes and voters in this country. White voters. And it also is not that wingnuts in public office feel entitled, it is that they actually ARE entitled by the majority of voters. Only way out of this is a lot more deprivations to focus the mush mind of the majority in this country.

    Happy 4th to everyone. It rained a little last night, and chances are for more, so we can all relax here a little on the worry of getting burned out of house and home.

  75. 75
    jwb says:

    Goblue72: Can’t condone the violence, but it would be nice if someone on the left would reliably pitch high and tight rather than always trying to nip that outside corner.

  76. 76
    WyldPirate says:

    OzoneR @63

    Which is of course Obama’s fault? You missed Zander’s point, which is NO ONE WILL TAKE ANYONE, NOT EVEN OBAMA, SERIOUSLY IF HE SAYS OTHERWISE.

    I didn’t say it was Obama’s fault that American’s a basically lazy, stupid and ignorant of their own history. Nor did I miss Zandar’s po9int.

    What is Obama’s fault is that he is feeding into and enabling American stupidity.

    I was proud of Obama at how he raged at and ridiculed the Rethugs–and Congress–more specifically the other day when he ridiculed them and insinuated that they were less competent and timely than his own daughters when it came to getting their job done.

    What I’m not proud of him about is the fact that he constantly validates Republican talking points. Sure–cut spending on stupid shit–like the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the War on drugs, farm subsidies, Big Oil subsidies, etc. But don;t give a goddamned inch when it comes to cutting shit for people that are suffering. But he will. Watch him.

  77. 77
    murbella says:

    look Cole. This is their Last Stand. The rise of the third culture, social media influence, red/blue genetics and the demographic timer are going to slaughter them.
    Like at Custer’s Last Stand, the Tonka Wakan will be the only survivor on their side.
    May the horse be with you.

  78. 78
    jwb says:

    General Stuck: “We can blame the press, but they are only reacting to the perennial favoritism the white majority voters have for the white party that is the GOP.”

    The press cares whit about the white voter; they don’t really even care about ratings. What the press does care deeply about is who is paying its bills.

  79. 79
    OzoneR says:

    I was proud of Obama at how he raged at and ridiculed the Rethugs—and Congress—more specifically the other day when he ridiculed them and insinuated that they were less competent and timely than his own daughters when it came to getting their job done.

    yeah, and how’s that working out for him? You see any Republicans falling to their knees? Did you see his approval rating jump?

    No, you saw him getting called a dick on national television.

    Obama isn’t feeding into anything, it’s already been fed. he cannot change it, just working within in.

    Sure—cut spending on stupid shit—like the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the War on drugs, farm subsidies, Big Oil subsidies, etc. But don;t give a goddamned inch when it comes to cutting shit for people that are suffering.

    which is EXACTLY WHAT HE SAID!

  80. 80
    General Stuck says:

    The press cares whit about the white voter; they don’t really even care about ratings. What the press does care deeply about is who is paying its bills

    Yes, but who is paying the largest share of the bills as listeners, readers, and watchers of their product. It is the majority white voter, with the majority of dollars and market power. I don’t think the press cares much about the ideology, other than maintaining some false equivalence to keep the pol grudge match going. But they do care about their money, and where that goes toward paying their bills.

  81. 81
    xian says:

    funny how an attack on norquist leads to a wyldstallion attack on health insurance reform. keep on fuckin’ that rat!

  82. 82
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @65 trollhattan

    At the very least I hope they insist on Pepsi.

    Blasphemer! Heresyer! Heresyiest!
    .
    .

  83. 83
    Chris says:

    @ General –

    So the wingnuts can obstruct an all dem in power government with record block voting filibusters, and they will not get blamed. And pretty much do as they please, and the press will not question them much, because the people out there, or the majority of people, WANTS to believe the GOP is a party that can be trusted to govern.

    Yep.

    In a nutshell, the American voters want to live in a world where electing Republicans leads to Democratic outcomes. They want the peace and prosperity and solidarity and greatness of the 1950s back, but they also want to believe that they can have these things by listening to the snake-oil salesmen telling them what they want to hear.

    How to fix that, I don’t know. But as long as it’s the case, the country’ll go nowhere but down. Like you said and like I’ve occasionally said, blaming the media or the politicians misses the point – it ultimately does come down on the voters.

  84. 84
    Jesse says:

    @74: Seen the future, eh? Obama’s gonna cave?

    I’m pretty sure there’s room to cut overhead in Medicare/Medicaid. I don’t see anything particularly “stimulative” in refusing to get the best deal for the public’s money, and I’m not going to call cutting overhead “cutting shit for people that are suffering.”

    I don’t care if the Republicans save face. I want actual results. Based on what I’ve seen so far, I like Obama’s chances.

    I agree you will never get the smashing rhetorical victory you seem to crave so very, very much.

  85. 85
    Anya says:

    With some people every story leads to how Obama has failed them.

    You want to know why we’re losing the message? The right and the left are united on one thing – Obama is on the wrong track. You always see on teevee, two view points: Obama is wrong from the left, and Obama is wrong from the right.

  86. 86
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jesse

    I agree you will never get the smashing rhetorical victory you seem to crave so very, very much.

    That’s a given, seeing as how no one is bothering to make it in the first place.

    And as for “saving face”, it’s the rehabilitation of the Republican Party that’s put governing in such a stranglehold.

  87. 87
    Corner Stone says:

    And slightly OT I guess, but I wish Bill Clinton would just STFU. President Obama does not need your advice, and I for one sure as fuck am tired of hearing it.

  88. 88
    OzoneR says:

    I agree you will never get the smashing rhetorical victory you seem to crave so very, very much.

    They’ll just keep pretending no one is bothering to try, all while celebrating Obama’s and other Democrats’ speeches where they did.

  89. 89
    dbwhite says:

    I think I found footage of John and Tunch:
    http://i1112.photobucket.com/a.....abd-58.gif

  90. 90
    Corner Stone says:

    @dbwhite
    The guy isn’t fat enough, the cat sure isn’t fat enough, and there is no Steeler’s garb or colors to be seen anywhere. Nor a candle anywhere.

  91. 91
    jwb says:

    General Stuck: That’s a misconception, I think. The press wouldn’t work the way they do if they actually cared substantively about their audience, which is remarkably small in absolute terms in any case. The only audience that matters is the CEO and at almost every company with a press arm, the profitability of the press is not the primary concern. Fox, for instance, makes their real money from sports and other entertainment ventures, not from news, and Murdoch is willing to hemorrhage money in the news division to ensure higher profitability for the rest of his investments.

  92. 92
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    You always see on teevee, two view points: Obama is wrong from the left, and Obama is wrong from the right.

    And yet his approval ratings, given the economy, are pretty strong.

    You also have to consider that at this point, Republican means one thing: When the rubber hits the road, there’s no difference between Olympia Snowe and James Inhofe, between Dick Lugar and John Cornyn. While Democrat means Sherrod Brown and Mary Landrieu, Mark Pryor (who, I’ll say this for him, keeps his head down) and Al Franken. An obvious point, I know, but one that seems to get overlooked when people bitch about Obama and “the Dems”.

    In the media Joe Klein, Jonathan Alter and Jon Chait all consider themselves and are considered liberals, but not That Kind Of Liberal, i.e. all three think the teachers’ union are the biggest problem in our educational system. Tom Friedman, and for the most part BoBo Brooks, basically endorse everything Obama has tried to do, but sagely agree we need a third party to do…. something.That something is “get around the Republicans”, but no one can say that out loud, because of fair and balanced.

  93. 93
    Linnaeus says:

    We’re just not going to be able to reverse 40+ years of right-wing advances in a a few years. We’re also not going to be able to do that without changing the milieu out of which our politicians emerge. That’s going to take years of work building independent left-liberal institutions, strengthening the ones that do exist right now, pushing the ideas from those institutions into the Democratic Party (the only real electoral vehicle the liberal-left has in this country) and only after all that can we bring left-liberal ideas to fruition in the form of policy.

    I can understand the frustration in the meantime. I don’t like hearing, for example, the president using austerity rhetoric – and I wish he’d use it less – but I can understand why he would do so. Certainly the obstructionist Republicans are a huge obstacle, but I think the Democratic Party really needs to do some soul-searching and coalition-forging, which I think it really hasn’t done well since the late 1970s. That’s going to take time, money, and work.

  94. 94
    General Stuck says:

    The press wouldn’t work the way they do if they actually cared substantively about their audience, which is remarkably small in absolute terms in any case

    I don’t know, maybe. But the facts are that news nowadays runs on a profit model like it used not to. And when that is the case, there is a tendency, even amongst otherwise thoughtful news people, to cater toward the majority of the market, and not piss them off too much. And the GOP is the party of the majority, the white majority. How much of this goes on I don’t know, but I believe it is a part of the media dysfunction, at least with cable news.

  95. 95
    WyldPirate says:

    OzoneR @79:

    yeah, and how’s that working out for him? You see any Republicans falling to their knees? Did you see his approval rating jump?

    No, they aren’t going to fall to their knees, but he doesn’t look so much like a capitulating weinie.

    No, you saw him getting called a dick on national television.

    Who gives a fuck what Mark Halperin says besides drama queens like you appear to be?

    Obama isn’t feeding into anything, it’s already been fed. he cannot change it, just working within in.

    Yes he is “feeding into things”. He could have yanked troops far faster in Afghanistan. That place is a complete and utter goddamned folly and a drain on money and lives. Furthermore, proposing 2 for 1 cuts in spending v. tax loophole closures isn’t shit. It is meaningless unless a lot of those cuts come from DOD and the big social programs.

  96. 96
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Who gives a fuck what Mark Halperin says besides drama queens like you appear to be?

    I see this a lot around here and the blogosphere in general. “It doesn’t matter what the pundits say!”

    President Gore is interested in your viewpoint, and would like to subscribe to your newletter.

  97. 97
    Corner Stone says:

    @Linnaeus

    but I think the Democratic Party really needs to do some soul-searching and coalition-forging, which I think it really hasn’t done well since the late 1970s. That’s going to take time, money, and work.

    What is there to forge? Every time a vote comes down the more left in the coalition are told to eat shit, be the adults in the room, and go along for the greater-good-so-the-perfect-doesn’t-become-the-enemy-of-your-mother.
    And when this fact is presented people start talking about “purists” and firebaggers and other nonsense.

  98. 98
  99. 99
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @68 dogwood

    You must explain exactly how progressive legislation would have passed in the 111th and 112th Congresses if Obama would have governed as a Democrat.

    To govern as a Democrat, you must fiercely battle to the end to get your progressive legislation passed, using every Congressional trick in the book, every hardball but legal tactic and threat available to you, and every rhetorical flourish on every TV and radio station and newspaper front page each and every day, relentlessly calling out and publicizing the stupidity and depraved moral character of the Republicans and the right wing until you’ve exhausted every possibility.

    That doesn’t mean you will get your entire agenda passed, but it does mean that you’ll be able to tell your children “I fought as hard as I could for the people and never said ok to something I believed was wrong” instead of “After I while I just gave up because it was too hard and Mitch McConnell and Eric Cantor were better men than I.” If you get beat by assholes one day, you get beat. And you come back the next day ready to give the beat-down rather than take it.

    I understand that this is antithetical to pampered balloonbaggerism, but no matter how much you counsel everyone to give up and meekly accept whatever lousy deal is given to you by corrupt power, however telegenic, I’m going to go down swinging. Speaking of which, Ginni! On the carpet! Now! There’s a fire in my bags!
    .
    .

    p.s. Never give up. Never, never, never, never. Ever.

  100. 100
    Corner Stone says:

    Furthermore, proposing 2 for 1 cuts in spending v. tax loophole closures isn’t shit.

    Current analysis, at least what I have seen, suggests that the current proposal is 85 cents in “entitlement” spending cuts, and 15 cents in tax loophole closures.
    We should dream of a 2 for 1 proposal.

  101. 101
    WyldPirate says:

    Jesse @84:

    I’m pretty sure there’s room to cut overhead in Medicare/Medicaid. I don’t see anything particularly “stimulative” in refusing to get the best deal for the public’s money, and I’m not going to call cutting overhead “cutting shit for people that are suffering.”

    Nice fucking strawman you built, Jesse. Did you have fun building it?

    While I said jack shit specifically about “overhead” in Medicare/Medicaid, “administrative overhead” is exceedingly low in both of these systems. We have this thing called “teh Google” and it tells me that that “overhead” is between 2-5%. Regular for-profit insurance has overhead rates of about 30%

  102. 102
    OzoneR says:

    No, they aren’t going to fall to their knees, but he doesn’t look so much like a capitulating weinie.

    If you think he looks like a capitulating weenie, you need to get out more, really. I’ve heard “he’s unreasonable and partisan” from more people this weekend than you’ve probably ever met in your life

    Who gives a fuck what Mark Halperin says besides drama queens like you appear to be?

    Now is the point where I stop taking you seriously, because no one is this stupid

  103. 103
    OzoneR says:

    To govern as a Democrat, you must fiercely battle to the end to get your progressive legislation passed, using every Congressional trick in the book, every hardball but legal tactic and threat available to you, and every rhetorical flourish on every TV and radio station and newspaper front page each and every day, relentlessly calling out and publicizing the stupidity and depraved moral character of the Republicans and the right wing until you’ve exhausted every possibility.

    Another words, you need to do things that aren’t possible.

  104. 104
    Corner Stone says:

    “Nothing can be done!”

  105. 105
    OzoneR says:

    Every time a vote comes down the more left in the coalition are told to eat shit, be the adults in the room, and go along for the greater-good-so-the-perfect-doesn’t-become-the-enemy-of-your-mother.

    That’s what happens when you’re the fringe in politics, you’re told the suck it up for the good of the country. Part of that soul searching may mean realizing a huge chunk of the Democratic Party are actually Republicans, but the left refuses to entertain the notion that that’s true, that they’re sharing a party with voters who may be conservative on a host of issues.

    The left can go and stand on principal, Lord knows they’ve done it before. it just means nothing gets done rather than a little.

    That’s life when you represent 20 percent of the country, deal with it.

  106. 106
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    To govern as a Democrat, you must fiercely battle to the end to get your progressive legislation passed,

    Evan Bayh, Claire McCaskill, Blanche Lincoln, Jim Webb, Mark Warner, Mark Pryor, Ben Nelson, Bill Nelson, Dianne Feinstein, Mary Landrieu, Max Baucus, Kent Conrad, Byron Dorgan, Tim Johnson and Joe Lieberman… interested… newsletter….

    And those are just the obvious ones, never mind better-intended knee-knockers this rogues gallery provides cover for.

  107. 107
    karen marie says:

    cat48 @ 54:

    I would attribute Patrick’s recovery to Walker, Kasich and Christie. Massachusetts voters realize how much worse it could be and are expressing their gratitude.

  108. 108
    Fluffy says:

    [Republicans] don’t attack their allies; they attack their enemies. They understand that each part of the movement has a part to play and they never go off script. Of course that’s not how the left goes about things.
    Please. If this were true, Norquist would have no power. He rules with fear — fear of political annihilation. He is able to rule elected Republicans because he destroyed the political careers of a few moderate Republicans who dared to go against him on his tax jihad.
    Reagan’s dictum of “thou shalt not criticize a fellow Republican” is not one that Norquist has ever followed. He hasn’t just trash talked a few moderate guys; he has spent large amounts of green paper “speech” destroying them.

  109. 109
    jwb says:

    General Stuck: That’s not exactly true either, that the news model is now a profit model. They certainly don’t care much about reporting the news, but they don’t seem to be in the business of attracting audiences either. If they were, you would see a lot more populist reporting. What muckracking that exists does so only to offer up shiny objects of distraction when a story isn’t going the way that the powers that be want.

    I would actually say the press is now in the business of producing propaganda. If they are cutting back on their news gathering capabilities, that is because propaganda doesn’t really have much need to know the world much beyond harvesting a few telling anecdotes which can be gleaned from hanging about the Applebees salad bar. They still have to pretend to gather news so that they can claim credibility when the world refuses to appear to order; but generally news is a cost that doesn’t contribute to the bottom line of the propaganda by which the owners judge the success of their press.

  110. 110
    Corner Stone says:

    The Congressional Progressive Caucus is the single largest caucus in the D Party.

  111. 111
    OzoneR says:

    The Congressional Progressive Caucus is the single largest caucus in the D Party.

    which means so much when the Democratic caucus in the House is the smallest its been since 1947.

    Any idiot can tell you that progressives would make up the majority of a Democratic minority.

    There are 81 members of the caucus, that’s less than half the entire Democratic caucus and 15% of the entire membership of Congress

    I’m sorry, liberals then only represent 15 percent of the country, not 20.

  112. 112
    General Stuck says:

    jwb

    Well, we are just going to have to disagree on this, because I don’t agree at all with your analysis in this comment.

  113. 113
    Corner Stone says:

    And any idiot can be innumerate when actual facts do not support a point they failed to make.

  114. 114
    Linnaeus says:

    @Corner Stone, #97:

    What is there to forge? Every time a vote comes down the more left in the coalition are told to eat shit, be the adults in the room, and go along for the greater-good-so-the-perfect-doesn’t-become-the-enemy-of-your-mother.
    And when this fact is presented people start talking about “purists” and firebaggers and other nonsense.

    And that’s a good question. I often think that the “purist” vs. “pragmatist” dichotomy is exaggerated (or employed in overly biased ways). I think the improved coalition-building has to begin with better institutions and promulgation of ideas. Change what’s possible, and you change what’s pragmatic.

    @OzoneR, #105:

    That’s what happens when you’re the fringe in politics, you’re told the suck it up for the good of the country. Part of that soul searching may mean realizing a huge chunk of the Democratic Party are actually Republicans, but the left refuses to entertain the notion that that’s true, that they’re sharing a party with voters who may be conservative on a host of issues.

    The left can go and stand on principal, Lord knows they’ve done it before. it just means nothing gets done rather than a little.

    That’s life when you represent 20 percent of the country, deal with it.

    I agree that the Democratic Party is a broader coalition than the Republican Party, which means that its constituent parts have to compromise with each other more than Republicans do internally. That said, I don’t think that the left wing of the Democratic Party (or in the US generally) is really all that “fringe”. When you break the issues down one by one, you find that much of what the American left wants, Americans also tend to want.

    Ideas and principles do matter, even if you can’t always translate those into actual policies. But you have no chance at all if you don’t get ideas and principles out there.

  115. 115
    jefft452 says:

    @77

    “Like at Custer’s Last Stand, the Tonka Wakan will be the only survivor on their side.”
    I hope not,
    the Lakota may have won the battle at the Little Big Horn, but they lost the war pretty badly

    “It will be just like the Alamo!”
    “We lost at the Alamo, Juan”
    “Speak for yourself, gringo”

  116. 116
    OzoneR says:

    I don’t think that the left wing of the Democratic Party (or in the US generally) is really all that “fringe”. When you break the issues down one by one, you find that much of what the American left wants, Americans also tend to want.

    but NEVER vote for, that’s the point. Polls on issues are useless if they don’t translate into votes.

    Americans wanted a public option, but many were not interested in supporting candidates who were, so their support of it is irrelevant. Americans supported ending the Bush tax cuts, but they voted for candidates who did not want to end them even over candidates who openly wanted to like Alan Grayson, Carol Shea-Porter, John Hall, Joe Sestak, Russ Feingold. A significant number of people who register on the side of the left on issues will never vote for a Democrat, whether they stand on principal or not, so their support is irrelevant.

    if you take the number of people who both support liberal policies and are willing to vote for a liberal Democrat, you’re down to about 20 percent.

  117. 117
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @ Jim: The theory is that when you fight as hard as possible, you may lose, but at least you’ve made your case and the people know what you stand for.

    Of course, the same people who are convinced of this theory _also_ process every loss as evidence that the fight wasn’t really as hard as it could or should have been.

    Also, the same people who believe this theory don’t have a mechanism by which the people who have been convinced of the rightness of your crusade can actually make something happen between one election and the next.

    Let’s say Obama makes the most brilliant possible speech on something; everyone loves it — not just liberals; he’s made the sale. The public supports his stance, like, 75-25. Does that make a single Republican vote for it? No. The Republicans benefit by hanging together come hell or high water. They don’t change their votes to hand Obama a victory, not even if their constituents demanded it. They figure they’ve got an even shot, at worst, getting reelected even after actively thwarting things that their voters want.

    You can say you’d like stronger rhetoric. Fine. But stronger rhetoric won’t change Republican votes. And that’s what the current political landscape looks like: Republicans acting as intransigent as possible and daring their voters to do something about it next cycle. Obama can’t actually fix that. No one could actually fix that. Fixing it would require Republicans to have a sense of either shame or professional pride. They have neither. Some of them used to. They’re gone.

  118. 118
    dogwood says:

    @99 Uncle Clarence Thomas

    Sorry, but you are unconvincing. “Fiercely battle” is not an answer to my question. I asked you to be specific. What exactly are the “every Congressional trick in the book”.? Please name one and explain how it works and how it would have worked in the health care issue.

  119. 119
    OzoneR says:

    No one could actually fix that.

    Voters could fix it.

  120. 120
    ABL says:

    I picked a good day to finally start using that pie filter all the kids are talking about.

  121. 121
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @ OzoneR — If voters would actually punish Republicans for intransigence (overall) or for refusing to back Worthwhile Idea X that Obama had harped on. They haven’t shown an inclination to do that, as you pointed out earlier.

  122. 122
    The Snarxist Formerly Known As Kryptik says:

    I wish I could say something.

    But the story and the whole discussion here simply returns me to a total utter depression and hopelessness that I can’t muster anything coherent outside of ‘We’re institutionally fucked’. And then I wish I could afford to have a drinking habit to fall back on so I could just walk through it all in a stupor.

  123. 123
    Linnaeus says:

    @OzoneR:

    Americans wanted a public option, but many were not interested in supporting candidates who were, so their support of it is irrelevant. Americans supported ending the Bush tax cuts, but they voted for candidates who did not want to end them even over candidates who openly wanted to like Alan Grayson, Carol Shea-Porter, John Hall, Joe Sestak, Russ Feingold. A significant number of people who register on the side of the left on issues will never vote for a Democrat, whether they stand on principal or not, so their support is irrelevant.

    I wouldn’t say it’s irrelevant; we then have to ask why this support isn’t being translated into votes. But opinions on issues suggest potential. I think there are many of these voters who can be convinced to vote for Democrats. It’s up to us, broadly speaking, to figure out how to do that.

  124. 124
    OzoneR says:

    we then have to ask why this support isn’t being translated into votes. But opinions on issues suggest potential. I think there are many of these voters who can be convinced to vote for Democrats. It’s up to us, broadly speaking, to figure out how to do that.

    Yes, I agree with this. But I don’t think many in the netroots are interested in figuring that out, because they don’t see it as a problem.

    Yesterday, I had dinner with a group of friends who all agree that we need; marriage equality, higher taxes on the rich, more jobs programs, green energy, and end the wars, but then they said they can’t wait to unelect Obama and throw Democrats out because they hate him so much and they hate liberals, even if they have to vote for Michele Bachmann. When I told them that he’d do, or at least Democrats would do, everything they said they wanted, they began backtracking, pointing out that they don’t trust Democrats, because they’ll give all the jobs to union thugs and illegal immigrants and spend higher tax dollars on welfare moms and illegal immigrants, also they would pull our troops from the wars and then make us less safe by tearing apart the military, and make energy more expensive by cutting off our oil and coal before we can find alternate sources.

    They want everything Democrats want, they just want Republicans to do it. So they’ll keep voting Republican in hopes they’ll come around.

    Also, Obama is black.

  125. 125
    ruemara says:

    You know what I find hilarious about this? This morning I got into a conversation with a conservative teabagger with regard to taxes on the rich. His whole point was that Dems had the majority and could have fixed this in ’08. I pointed out that there are blue dogs and a minority senator can put either an anonymous hold or just signal a filibuster and it negates a 60 vote majority if you just can’t get 60 votes. I also pointed out that the timeline for 60 votes always included Joe Lieberman, who is now an (I) and has not always been consistently a Democratic vote. I also pointed the timeline with regard to seating Al Franken and the death of Senator Kennedy. Nope, he was insistent that he understood congress and if Dems wanted they could have raised taxes when they had a majority. It seems to me that those “frittered away a majority” peeps are all singing the same song, no matter which side of the liberal/conservative line you’re on. And no amount of facts can sway them.

  126. 126
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @ Linnaeus: I don’t think it’s that hard to figure out why it doesn’t translate into votes. It’s easy to think, “Well, I don’t like what R. Candidate did on Issue X, or Y, or Z for that matter, but I’ll be damned if I’m gonna vote for D. Candidate instead, because he wants to raise my taxes and give away the money to lazy bastards looking for a handout.” Most of us do the same thing in reverse: “I don’t like what Obama did on civil liberties, tax cut policy, and Afghanistan, but I’ll be damned if I’m gonna vote for R. Candidate instead, because he or she is an incomprehensibly godawful fuckstick.”

    Reid beat Angle by making it clear that she was a crackpot. Conway couldn’t beat Paul that way. So there are limits to the power of tribalism, but there are also limits to how well it can be confronted. People mock the “If you let the other guy win things will be much worse” strategy, but from my perspective that’s not so bad, especially considering how true it is now.

  127. 127
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @118 dogwood

    Sorry, but you are unconvincing. “Fiercely battle” is not an answer to my question. I asked you to be specific. What exactly are the “every Congressional trick in the book”.? Please name one and explain how it works and how it would have worked in the health care issue.

    I was quite specific and quite convincing. You just don’t believe that doing the right thing, or not doing the wrong thing, regardless of the consequences, is any way to live an honorable and successful life for yourself and others. Health care = budget reconciliation, without asking for any input or advice from Republicans. If blue dogs whine, you rhetorically beat them about the head and shoulders at public events in their district and personally promise to assign part of your massive money machine to their political demise. Their dirty laundry is suddenly discussed in the media. Their personal life inexplicably becomes very difficult. I’m sure that as a petty underhanded balloonbagger thug you can think of other effective methods, some perhaps involving nuclear waste. Or they can cooperate and get full Democratic and presidential support and public praise in their next campaign. Oh, and if that fails? Your reward is having done the right thing, having taken the case to the people, and having prepared the battlefield for the next war. Now go forth and tell a fren.
    .
    .

  128. 128
    OzoneR says:

    If blue dogs whine, you rhetorically beat them about the head and shoulders at public events in their district and personally promise to assign part of your massive money machine to their political demise.

    Because Barack Obama is going to have so much influence in Arkansas, Louisiana and Nebraska against people who aren’t going to run for office for another 4 or 6 years…or at all ever again. You can’t be dumb enough to realize beating on Obama is a good thing where these Blue Dogs come from. Even the ones who lost in 2010 did better in 2010 than Obama in their districts/ states in 2008.

    Your reward is having done the right thing

    I’m sure all those who will forced to live in the streets because of President Bachmann will be able to keep warm at night knowing that the Democrats “did the right thing”

    Politics doesn’t work like that, you have to realize that at some point. There are lives at stake.

  129. 129
    Yutsano says:

    Oh, and if that fails? Your reward is having done the right thing, having taken the case to the people, and having prepared the battlefield for the next war

    So nothing actually changes but you feel good about yourself so that’s what’s REALLY important, amirite?

  130. 130
    OzoneR says:

    So nothing actually changes but you feel good about yourself so that’s what’s REALLY important, amirite?

    The whole “at least you stood up for whats right” bullshit is just bullshit because inevitably the same people who argue that will say “didn’t fight hard enough” “didn’t really want it to pass” “was just pandering”

    There’s no such things as fighting and losing. Anyone on the left who says otherwise is not being serious.

  131. 131
    OzoneR says:

    I don’t think it’s that hard to figure out why it doesn’t translate into votes. It’s easy to think, “Well, I don’t like what R. Candidate did on Issue X, or Y, or Z for that matter, but I’ll be damned if I’m gonna vote for D. Candidate instead, because he wants to raise my taxes and give away the money to lazy bastards looking for a handout.” Most of us do the same thing in reverse: “I don’t like what Obama did on civil liberties, tax cut policy, and Afghanistan, but I’ll be damned if I’m gonna vote for R. Candidate instead, because he or she is an incomprehensibly godawful fuckstick.”

    There’s a difference. In the latter, Democrats won’t vote R, because they’re worse, but in the former, Republicans won’t vote D despite them being better.

  132. 132
    Linnaeus says:

    @OzoneR & @FlipYrWhig:

    Yeah, I agree with both of you that tribalism is a potent force and that’s often why you get voters who hold certain views, but seem to vote in the opposite direction. And yes, there’s only so much you can do to dislodge that. Still, I think the American liberal-left can take a few lessons from the American right, which has been successful in shifting American political culture and the rhetoric in that culture over the last 40 years. Again, it won’t be easy, it will take a long time, and there will be plenty of failures along the way. But I don’t see what other option we have. I know that I’m on the left wing of American politics and that means that I won’t live to see a lot of what I’d like to see, but maybe somewhere along the way, I’ll see at least some of it while working to achieve all of it.

  133. 133
    bourbaki says:

    @ruemara

    I hate to agree with a teabagger, but considering that the original Bush tax cuts were passed via the reconciliation process (i.e. only needing a majority vote in the Senate). I’m pretty sure the Ds could have also used reconciliation to pass “middle class tax cuts” that went into effect immediately after the Bush tax cuts expired. The rest of the Bush cuts would then be allowed to expire as scheduled (hell they even could have raised them on the higher brackets).

    It might have lead to even more gridlock in the Senate but then you would essentially have the Rs filibustering everything specifically to get taxes cut only on high tax brackets. We’ll never know now…

  134. 134
    Yutsano says:

    I’m pretty sure the Ds could have also used reconciliation to pass “middle class tax cuts” that went into effect immediately after the Bush tax cuts expired.

    It’s my understanding you can only use reconciliation once a session, and they had already used it to reconcile ACA so that tool was no longer available to them. I could be remembering wrong though. Plus that wouldn’t have gotten the UI extension or the end of DADT. The tax bill had many many more pieces to it that made it complicated to parse out.

  135. 135
    OzoneR says:

    Still, I think the American liberal-left can take a few lessons from the American right, which has been successful in shifting American political culture and the rhetoric in that culture over the last 40 years. Again, it won’t be easy, it will take a long time, and there will be plenty of failures along the way. But I don’t see what other option we have. I know that I’m on the left wing of American politics and that means that I won’t live to see a lot of what I’d like to see, but maybe somewhere along the way, I’ll see at least some of it while working to achieve all of it.

    I don’t think the left has the stomach for it, nor do I think some even think its necessary.

  136. 136
    Corner Stone says:

    I don’t think the left has the stomach for it, nor do I think some even think its necessary.

    “Nothing can be done!”

  137. 137
    The Snarxist Formerly Known As Kryptik says:

    As far as trying to drag votes leftward, it feels increasingly impossible, since it seems like it’s become far easier to convince people of right-wing bullshit than even dare drift them leftward, because it starts to simply come down to ‘Dirty Fucking Hippies’. As I’ve said several times before, our political discourse as devolved into a giant mass of hippie punching. It doesn’t matter what your actual policies and politics are, as long as your opponent can paint you successfully as a dirty fucking hippie, thus ensuring that you are entirely unelectable and easily ignored.

    And as much as I like moral victories, it does little good when everything becomes tangibly fucking worse. You can only afford moral victories when you can get tangible victories every now and then. Yes, we’ve gotten some victories like the gay marriage vote in New York, but when we’ve literally lost almost every other state in the fucking country to the Randian madness, and 2012 is looking even more and more of a massacre for any progressive hopes, moral victories are goddamn useless.

  138. 138
    OzoneR says:

    “Nothing can be done!”

    If you want to have that attitude, that’s fine.

  139. 139
    OzoneR says:

    It’s my understanding you can only use reconciliation once a session, and they had already used it to reconcile ACA so that tool was no longer available to them.

    once in a budget year, so they could have done it again, but they never wrote it into the budget rules, perhaps because they didn’t think it would be such a big problem.

  140. 140
    Montysano says:

    @ Chris 83

    In a nutshell, the American voters want to live in a world where electing Republicans leads to Democratic outcomes.

    Brilliant. Consider it stolen.

  141. 141
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @ Snarxist — The nice thing is that there’s a built-in expiration date for anything involving “hippies.” (Including the whole consultant/strategist class advice about how to ensure you don’t look like one.) The bad thing is that it’s at least 10 years away.

    And I don’t think that “nothing can be done.” But we need to disentangle what we would like to hear (including the idea that it theoretically helps in the long run, rhetorically/strategically) from what is going to help win votes in this Congress or elections in the near term.

  142. 142
    dogwood says:

    I

    ’m sure that as a petty underhanded balloonbagger thug you can think of other effective methods, some perhaps involving nuclear waste.

    This is ridiculous. I don’t comment that often, but I’m sure I’ve written things many would disagree with. However, I’ve never been personal. Sorry to have replied to you. Even though I don’t write often, I read here regularly and should know who to avoid. Anyway, “thug” is teaparty lingo. Further proof that the right even controls the progressive left.

  143. 143
    NR says:

    The Congressional Progressive Caucus is the single largest caucus in the D Party.

    The Congressional Progressive Caucus is a joke. They have no power and they get routinely ignored by the Democratic leadership. In return, they vote for every single piece of corporatist legislation that leadership puts up.

    Yes, the CPC would probably do things differently if they ran the Democratic party, but they don’t, and they never will, and when push comes to shove they carry the corporatists’ water every single time.

  144. 144
    gogol's wife says:

    Dogwood (#142), I’ve enjoyed your contributions to this discussion, as well as OzoneR’s. Everyone has gotten into a fruitless exchange now and then, I guess it comes with the commenting territory.

  145. 145
    WyldPirate says:

    Jim, foolish literalist @96:

    President Gore is interested in your viewpoint, and would like to subscribe to your newletter.

    What a load of horseshit!

    Seems like your fucking gripe (or your weak-assed excuse of a retort) might be better taken up with the SCOTUS.

    Or you could bitch at Big Al Gore himself for running away from Clinton–and for hiring Bob (I’m a Big Fucking Loser) Shrum.

  146. 146
    murbella says:

    jeez.
    America is still 50% bubba.
    deal.

    it will get better. ;)
    O just slipped the Dream Act by via executive order.
    why is there nothing in the press about this? Because its a LOSS.
    Bubba is losing, and the conservative elites know it.
    Red/blue genetics and electoral demographics are going to take the bubbas power away.

  147. 147
    Harvey says:

    nothing but “change can’t happen” is all i see here. if Democrats want to achieve the same results as Republicans, maybe they should “play” the same game as the Republicans do.

    enforce party discipline or lose their seats. after all what good are Blue Dogs if they vote with the “other guy” to save their seat. still a REpublican in my book, Landrieu, for example. and all those other Quislings.

    oh but that would be “mean” and that isn’t for the good of the party. at least not in the short term, Norquist shows how it works in the long term.

    but Democrats give up saying, “that would be Mean!” and never go there.

    well. Change won’t happen until all the Blue Dogs are gone. All those Southerners who are Democrats in name only. but i digress. lol.

    i no longer wonder why. it is past obvious, if you want to see, that is.

    and using Frank Luntz’s vocabulary just reinforces the REpublican argument.

    Such Republican ground rules breed Republican outcomes.

    i have no tolerance for those who follow the tactics of the Right on the Left.
    circular firing squad, indeed.

    too bad Obama believes deficit spending enough to mention it in his speech.
    Austerity must be followed at all costs. Social programs are secondary to winning over the Independent voter.

    Independent voters vote for those who stand for something and never waver, like the center Right Democrats do. and that is why Obama has adopted the Republican “conversation”.

    It’s obvious who Obama is trying to “win” over when speaking like a Republican. Independents think Obama is capitulating by using the Republican “conversation.” Shit, why vote for Obama, or listen to Obama, why follow Obama if Obama only speaks Republican. Vote for the REAL thing. and he’s Black too. “lets get a real Republican, a white guy.”

    talk like a Democrat? is that not Okay for Politicians. lol. obviously not.

    amazingly simple why Democrats don’t follow Democrats, even Obama follows the Republicans, too. no consistent counter to the “deficit is bad, austerity is good” message the Republican have been selling. Even Obama believes the Republican view that “Government is Bad,” from the context of the words he uses. I guess Greece is coming here sooner than later.

    reminds me of that commercial i saw as a kid.
    silly rabbit, Trix are for kids.

    Government is Bad triumphs again, Reagan and his Revolution rides to the rescue. thanks to the Democrats adopting this Republican Revolution.

    Win one for the Gipper, Obama. Democrats will love you, the people on Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid will get screwed by you, though. they never mattered apparently. you never defended Medicare/Social Security with the Bully Pulpit… For like regular Americans, Belt tightening requires sacrifices by the poor.

    One Term president if Obama touches Social Security and Medicare, for sure, honey. all the glib BS won’t change that, for the Perfect Good or whatever excuse is lobbed.

  148. 148
    murbella says:

    aww. Obama is going to be a two term president.
    he is, so far, running unopposed to all apprearances.
    And its Ryan and the conservitards that are “touching” SS and medicare.
    you are very confused.
    ;)

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